Thursday, 31 October 2019

Happy Halloween

We didn't get around to carving pumpkins this year so I don't have any fun pics to share today but I wanted to wish everyone a Happy Halloween anyway and it's the perfect excuse to include the latest Simon's Cat video!

I hope you all have fun tonight trick or treating :)

Vuelio Top 10 UK Literature Blogs 2019


To be honest I still can't quite get my head around this but I'm very excited to announce that Feeling Fictional has made it into the Vuelio's list of Top 10 UK Literature blogs for the third year running! I still don't quite know how my little corner of the internet ended up making the list - especially considering how fantastic all the other blogs included are! - but I'm very honoured to be there and it's thanks to all of you who visit my blog and read my reviews.

You can find the full list of blogs on the Vuelio website here and like I said already it really is a fantastic list so it's well worth checking out some of the others on there (although I expect you're already following most if not all of them!).

I wanted to say a huge thank you once again to everyone who visits my blog, when I started this back in 2010 I never expected to find such a fantastic community of supportive bloggers, authors and publicists. I definitely didn't think I'd still be blogging nearly 10 years later and I had no idea how many new friends I'd make along the way. Thank you all for helping to keep blogging fun for all these years & thank you to Vuelio for including me in the list again!

Wednesday, 30 October 2019

Review: Ronda - Jose Manuel Real Pascual

Informative tour guide of the Spanish town of Ronda including over 80 photographs as well as a detailed history of the area.

Visit the book page on Goodreads for more information
















Review:
Another tour guide purchased on my recent holiday to Spain this one is all about the mountain town Ronda and specifically Puente Nuevo, the bridge that separates the old and new town and spans the 100m deep Tajo gorge. The bridge was completed in 1793 after 40 years of construction and is just an incredible piece of architecture. I'm scared of heights so crossing the bridge was pretty terrifying to me but the views down the gorge and across the valley were absolutely stunning.

This guide book has a lot of background information about the history of Ronda but what I love most are the gorgeous photographs of the bridge and the surrounding area. It kind of blows my mind that anyone would chose to live right on the edge of such a deep gorge but it's certainly a beautiful area!




If you're interested I also found this fantastic drone footage of Puente Nuevo which really gives you some perspective on just how deep the gorge really is.



Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Review: Guided Tour of Gibraltar - T.J. Finlayson

Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory located on the southern end of the Iberian Peninsula. The Rock of Gibraltar is the major landmark of the region. At its foot is a densely populated city area, home to over 30,000 Gibraltarians and other nationalities.

Visit the book page on Goodreads for more information














Review:
I love travel guides, whether it's ones I buy before a trip so I can read up on where I'm going or ones I purchase while I'm away to remind me of places I've been, they're something I always enjoy looking through. I picked up this guide to Gibraltar on a recent holiday to Spain when we took a day trip and it's a lovely keepsake. It's really weird to drive 5 minutes from Spain into somewhere that looks and feels so British with everything priced in pounds rather than euros and just a totally different atmosphere to the Spanish towns nearby!

This book has all kinds of interesting information about the history of Gibraltar, it's strategic location and how it has been used as a military base in multiple wars. It also has information about some of the popular tourist spots and a lot of gorgeous pictures of the area.







Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Tuesday, 29 October 2019

Release Blitz: Beauty - Lexi Blake


Beauty, the final installment of A Faery Story Series, a sexy paranormal romance from New York Times bestselling author Lexi Blake, writing as Sophie Oak is available now!


The princess in the tower

In one horrifying night, Bronwyn Finn lost her family, her kingdom, and the princes who had haunted her dreams for years. Left alone, years pass as she fights for survival and craves revenge against the uncle who took everything from her. But she’s never forgotten her Dark Ones. Now she hides along with her guardian, but the war rages ever closer.

Two dark princes

A tragedy marred Lach and Shim’s lives. The future kings of the Unseelie Fae are obsessed with finding their promised wife—Bronwyn. Lach and Shim have never stopped believing that Bronwyn is their mate. She is the bond that connects the halves of their shared soul.

A destiny that will change a kingdom

With the blessing of the renegade kings, Beck and Cian Finn, Lach and Shim begin a dangerous quest to find their bride before Torin and his hags take her life.

Across two planes, a war will rage. Lives will be lost. Love will be found. And the Seelie Fae will welcome their true kings home.

Re-released in a second edition. Re-edited but no substantial changes.


Download your copy today!
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/Beautylb
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2PaYmNp
Amazon Paperback: https://amzn.to/2oV8m2F

About Lexi Blake

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance that she found success. She likes to find humor in the strangest places. Lexi believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome or foursome may seem.


Connect with Lexi
Stay up to date with Lexi by joining her mailing list:

Blog Tour: This Earl of Mine - Kate Bateman


Today I'm taking part in the blog tour for This Earl of Mine, the first book in Kate Bateman's new Bow Street Bachelors historical romance series which publishes today. You can read the excerpt below as well as a Q&A with Kate but first let me give you a little more information about the book:

Introducing the Bow Street Bachelors—men who work undercover for London’s first official police force—and the women they serve to protect. . .and wed?

Shipping heiress Georgiana Caversteed is done with men who covet her purse more than her person. Even worse than the ton’s lecherous fortune hunters, however, is the cruel cousin determined to force Georgie into marriage. If only she could find a way to be . . . widowed? Georgie hatches a madcap scheme to wed a condemned criminal before he’s set to be executed. All she has to do is find an eligible bachelor in prison to marry her, and she’ll be free. What could possibly go wrong?

Benedict William Henry Wylde, scapegrace second son of the late Earl of Morcott and well-known rake, is in Newgate prison undercover, working for Bow Street. Georgie doesn’t realize who he is when she marries him—and she most certainly never expects to bump into her very-much-alive, and very handsome, husband of convenience at a society gathering weeks later. Soon Wylde finds himself courting his own wife, hoping to win her heart since he already has her hand. But how can this seductive rogue convince brazen, beautiful Georgie that he wants to be together…until actual death do they part?

Excerpt:

Chapter 1.

London, March 1816.

There were worse places to find a husband than Newgate Prison.

Of course there were.

It was just that, at present, Georgie couldn’t think of any.

“Georgiana Caversteed, this is a terrible idea.”

Georgie frowned at her burly companion, Pieter Smit, as the nondescript carriage he’d summoned to convey them to London’s most notorious jail rocked to a halt on the cobbled street. The salt-weathered Dutchman always used her full name whenever he disapproved of some- thing she was doing. Which was often.

“Your father would turn in his watery grave if he knew what you were about.”

That was undoubtedly true. Until three days ago, en- listing a husband from amongst the ranks of London’s most dangerous criminals had not featured prominently on her list of life goals. But desperate times called for des- perate measures. Or, in this case, for a desperate felon about to be hanged. A felon she would marry before the night was through.

Georgie peered out into the rain-drizzled street, then up, up the near-windowless walls. They rose into the mist, five stories high, a vast expanse of brickwork, bleak and unpromising. A church bell tolled somewhere in the darkness, a forlorn clang like a death knell. Her stomach knotted with a grim sense of foreboding.

Was she really going to go through with this? It had seemed a good plan, in the safety of Grosvenor Square. The perfect way to thwart Cousin Josiah once and for all. She stepped from the carriage, ducked her head against the rain, and followed Pieter under a vast arched gate. Her heart hammered at the audacity of what she planned.

They’d taken the same route as condemned prisoners on the way to Tyburn tree, only in reverse. West to east, from the rarefied social strata of Mayfair through gradu- ally rougher and bleaker neighborhoods, Holborn and St. Giles, to this miserable place where the dregs of humanity had been incarcerated. Georgie felt as if she were nearing her own execution.

She shook off the pervasive aura of doom and straight- ened her spine. This was her choice. However unpalat- able the next few minutes might be, the alternative was far worse. Better a temporary marriage to a murderous, unwashed criminal than a lifetime of misery with Josiah.

They crossed the deserted outer courtyard, and Georgie cleared her throat, trying not to inhale the foul-smelling air that seeped from the very pores of the building. “You have it all arranged? They are expecting us?”

Pieter nodded. “Aye. I’ve greased the wheels with yer blunt, my girl. The proctor and the ordinary are both bent as copper shillings. Used to having their palms greased, those two, the greedy bastards.”

Her father’s right-hand man had never minced words in front of her, and Georgie appreciated his bluntness. So few people in the ton ever said what they really meant. Pieter’s honesty was refreshing. He’d been her father’s man for twenty years before she’d even been born. A case of mumps had prevented him from accompanying William Caversteed on his last, fateful voyage, and Georgie had often thought that if Pieter had been with her father, maybe he’d still be alive. Little things like squalls, ship- wrecks, and attacks from Barbary pirates would be mere inconveniences to a man like Pieter Smit.

In the five years since Papa’s death, Pieter’s steadfast loyalty had been dedicated to William’s daughters, and Georgie loved the gruff, hulking manservant like a second father. He would see her through this madcap scheme— even if he disapproved.

She tugged the hood of her cloak down to stave off the drizzle. This place was filled with murderers, highway- men, forgers, and thieves. Poor wretches slated to die, or those “lucky” few whose sentences had been commuted to transportation. Yet in her own way, she was equally desperate.

“You are sure that this man is to be hanged tomorrow?”

Pieter nodded grimly as he rapped on a wooden door. “I am. A low sort he is, by all accounts.”

She shouldn’t ask, didn’t want to know too much about the man whose name she was purchasing. A man whose death would spell her own freedom. She would be wed and widowed within twenty-four hours.



From This Earl of Mine by Kate Bateman. Copyright © 2019 by the author and reprinted by permission of St. Martin’s Publishing Group.



Q&A with Kate Bateman:

Q: What inspired you to write This Earl of Mine?
A: Most of my books are inspired by real historical events, but for the adventure subplot in This Earl of Mine I was looking up something completely different, fell down a research rabbit hole, and stumbled upon an outlandish plot to rescue Napoleon from exile on Saint Helena using a submarine! I’d had no idea submersibles were even in use in the Regency, but a little digging soon revealed a tale far stranger than fiction—with plenty of smugglers, spies, and underhand skullduggery thrown in. Of course, then my writer brain couldn’t help but wonder WHAT IF . . .?

What if someone loyal to Napoleon stole the plans for the submarine from the Admiralty? And what if London’s fledgling police force, The Bow Street Runners, were tasked with finding the vessel and foiling the scheme?

The main plot, of course, is the romantic one between shipping heiress Georgie Caversteed and Bow Street Runner Benedict Wylde. They try to piece together the clues, while trying to ignore the inconvenient attraction that sparks between them. (Spoiler alert: they succeed at the former, and fail miserably at the latter!)

Q: Is there one thing you would like readers to take away from this story?
A: You mean apart from a new appreciation of early19th century submarine development?! Why, yes! I firmly believe in happy-ever-afters for everyone, and while none of my characters may be perfect, they’re certainly perfect for each other. A successful romance should be a true partnership between equals, with love, respect, humor, and kindness. I hope that’s what readers see develop between Georgie and Benedict.

Q: Where do you go or what resources do you use to make sure your novels are historically correct?
A: I have quite a bit of overall historical knowledge from my life as an antiques appraiser and auctioneer; I’ve handled plenty of Regency-era artifacts, like scent bottles, reticules, clothes, letters, furniture etc. And I’ve visited (and lived in) plenty of historic houses when I lived in England. So I have a pretty good idea what that world is like when I’m describing it. I do lots of random research online too, though. I suspect I’m on a secret CIA watchlist because of my weird internet browsing history, which currently includes such gems as: ‘does Prussic acid smell like almonds?’ ‘18th century jewel heists,’ and ‘chloroform, first use.’

Q: Did you learn anything surprising while researching for this novel?
A: Apart from the crazy submarine plot, I found out what the chapel of Newgate prison looked like in 1816, discovered more about the founding of London’s first true police force, the Bow Street Runners, and found a new book boyfriend in the wonderfully roguish Benedict Wylde!

Q: Describe the hero and heroine of This Earl of Mine in three words each.
A: Georgie is resourceful, determined, and curious. Benedict is amusing, loyal and scoundrelly!

Q: What was the hardest scene to write in This Earl of Mine? Your favorite?
A: My favorite scene was the sexy banter between Benedict and Georgie as they listen to the terrible poetry written by Juliet’s fiancé. Almost every sentence is a double entendre, and Benedict is shameless in trying to say something utterly inappropriate to make Georgie laugh, and I just giggle every time I think of it. I hope readers can feel the ridiculously flirtatious, slow-burn teasing in that scene. Yum!

The hardest was the sexy scene inside the tiny submarine. It’s a confined space, and I had to think about the technicalities of which body part was where, and whether they had enough space to do the scandalous things I wanted them to do. (Of course they did!)

Q: Why do you write historical romance?
A: Because it can be total escapism. A reader can travel back in time to a different world and encounter situations that just don’t happen today. As a writer I like the challenge presented by the historical parameters; lots of great conflicts arise because of social, cultural, or economic factors. Plus, there are so many real historical adventures out there just waiting to be discovered. . .

Q: Is there another particular author that inspires you or that you enjoy reading?
A: SO MANY AUTHORS! Laura Kinsale, Connie Brockway (As you Desire is a favorite), Loretta Chase, Judith McNaught, Anne Stuart, Joanna Bourne, Tessa Dare, Eloisa James, Suzan Elizabeth Philips, Julie Garwood, Galen Foley, Kerrigan Byrne, Julia Quinn, Beverly Jenkins, Alyssa Cole, Joanna Shupe, Johanna Lindsey, J.R Ward, Janet Evanovich, Georgette Heyer, Mary Renault, Jane Austen, E.M Forster, Leo Tolstoy, P.G. Wodehouse, Antoine de Saint Exupery, Jean M. Auel, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, . . . Ok. I’ll stop now. But there are plenty more.

Q: What’s next for the Bow Street Bachelors?
A: Two more books! Those bad boys Alex Harland and Sebastien Wolff each get their own adventure and I can’t wait for everyone to read them! Alex meets his match in half-French jewel thief Emmy Danvers –AKA The Nightjar– in To Catch an Earl, (Bow Street Bachelors #2). And Seb gets a sexy cat-and-mouse game of his own when he’s forced to protect the infuriating Anya Denisova – a feisty Russian Princess who’s faked her own death in The Princess and The Rogue, (Bow Street Bachelors #3).

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
A: Only that if you haven’t already preordered This Earl Of Mine, the paperback is currently at a special preorder price of $6.79, so snap it up in time for the release day, October 29th! Happy reading everyone!

Author Bio:

Kate Bateman, (also writing as K. C. Bateman), is the #1 bestselling author of historical romances, including her RITA® nominated Renaissance romp, The Devil To Pay, and the novels in the Secrets & Spies series To Steal a Heart, A Raven’s Heart, and A Counterfeit Heart. When not writing novels that feature feisty, intelligent heroines and sexy, snarky heroes you want to both strangle and kiss, Kate works as a fine art appraiser and on-screen antiques expert for several popular TV shows in the UK. She splits her time between Illinois and her native England. Follow her on Twitter to learn more.

Social Media Links:
Author Web Site
Facebook
Twitter

Release Blitz: Shadows - Kristen Proby


"Gripping, unique, and just enough scary to make you jump when you hear a loud noise--Shadows is the perfect blend of paranormal and contemporary romance!" -- Rachel Van Dyken, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Shadows, an all-new chilling and must read paranormal romance from New York Times bestselling author Kristen Proby, is available now!


I am never alone. Not even when I am alone.

I see the unquiet dead, the souls that wander through the French Quarter.

They can’t move on, and I can’t stop seeing them.

I wear malachite for protection, and I control what I let in. It’s the only way to stay sane.

Everything changes the day Cassian Winslow joins my ghost walking tour and knocks my world off its axis with green eyes the color of the stone around my neck.

An unspeakable evil is loose in New Orleans, taking young women and leaving a bloodbath in his wake. More shadows lurking for me. More unhappy dead. There might be a way to stop it.

Open myself up to Cassian.

If I do, it could spell his death.

But if I don’t, it’s mine.


Download your copy today!
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/Shadows
Amazon Paperback: https://amzn.to/31JzfUA

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2lErqQk


About Kristen Proby

Kristen was born and raised in a small resort town in her beloved Montana. In her mid-twenties, she decided to stretch her wings and move to the Pacific Northwest, where she made her home for more than a dozen years.

During that time, Kristen wrote many romance novels and joined organizations such as RWA and other small writing groups. She spent countless hours in workshops, and more mornings than she can count up before the dawn so she could write before going to work. She submitted many manuscripts to agents and editors alike, but was always told no. In the summer of 2012, the self-publishing scene was new and thriving, and Kristen had one goal: to publish just one book. It was something she longed to cross off of her bucket list.

Not only did she publish one book, she’s since published close to thirty titles, many of which have hit the USA Today, New York Times and Wall Street Journal Bestsellers lists. She continues to self publish, best known for her With Me In Seattle and Boudreaux series, and is also proud to work with William Morrow, a division of HarperCollins, with the Fusion Series.

Kristen and her husband, John, make their home in her hometown of Whitefish, Montana with their two pugs and two cats.

Connect with Kristen:

Monday, 28 October 2019

Review: Bound - Lexi Blake

Megan Starke has given up believing in knights in shining armor. With an unrewarding job and a failed marriage, no one would confuse her life with a fairy tale. No one is coming to save the day or carry her off to a romantic fantasy. So when she wakes up in a magical world and discovers she is to be the grand prize in a fierce and bloody tournament, she isn’t sure if she’s having a sexy dream or a horrible nightmare.

Two kings without a kingdom

Beckett and Cian were raised to be the saviors of their people. Prepared all their lives to lead the Seelie Fae, prophecy proclaimed they would find a bondmate whose love would complete them and unleash their magical powers. But the thrust of a traitor’s blade stole that future and now it threatens to take their lives. Struggling in exile, their glorious destiny has become a curse. Unless they can find the perfect woman to save them, they will descend into madness and ruin. When all hope seems lost, Beck sees Meg and knows she’s the key to their salvation.

An epic battle begins

In a world filled with dethroned kings, upwardly mobile vampires, and dangerous, feline-loving hags, Meg will need all her strength to survive. Finding herself caught between Beck and Cian, she’s willing to do whatever it takes to claim her happily ever after.

Re-released in a second edition. Re-edited but no substantial changes.

A Faery Story Series:
(Originally published under the pen name Sophie Oak)
Bound
Beast
Beauty

Visit Lexi Blake's website for more information

Review:
When Megan is abducted by a demon and taken to a different realm at first she assumes its a horrible nightmare. Then, when she starts to understand what has happened all she can think about is finding a way to escape and get back home. But the longer she spends in Faery, especially with twin brothers Beckett and Cian, the more she starts to question herself. Why return home to a dead end job, a failed marriage and a family she never sees when she could stay here and be happy? But first Meg has to decide whether she can accept the relationship that Beck and Cian are offering her or whether she prefers to fight for something on her own terms.

I've become a huge Lexi Blake fan since I first started reading her rereleased Sophie Oak books, I love the Texas Sirens and Nights in Bliss series and I really like the way all of her books tie into one large universe. As much as I love her contemporary romances I'm really a paranormal girl at heart so I wanted to read this series the minute I first heard about it and I wasn't disappointed. Bound is a great introduction and pulls readers into a world full of fae and vampires, one with multiple realms and interesting politics.

Meg is a great character, she's a normal human girl who had no idea that other realms existed until she was forcibly taken into one so she's totally out of her depth in the beginning but she's no pushover and once she starts to figure things out she works hard to make a place for herself. She's had enough of living for other people's expectations and is determined to take control of her own destiny. Beck is the more dominant of the twins, he's the one who likes to be in control and who wants to protect the people he cares about but he has a few personal hangups that were very frustrating for Meg to deal with. I could understand why he acted the way he did but I was glad that Meg fought to show him what she needed. Cian was definitely the more relaxed brother, he's more of a joker and takes things less seriously but that doesn't make him any less committed to Meg and their relationship. Meg had a great connection with both of her men and this story was just as hot as the Bliss / Texas Sirens books.

I think what I loved most was that Meg was the real hero of the story, she is the one who comes to the rescue and she definitely earns her happily ever after. I loved the twin's vampire cousin Dante so I'm really happy that his book is next and I'm looking forward to continuing the series.

Source: Received from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Sunday, 27 October 2019

Review: Bishop's Queen - Katie Reus

Return to the Endgame trilogy where blood is thick, but passion is thicker…

He doesn’t believe in fairy-tale endings…

They used to call Evan Bishop the golden boy. He had it all and was about to close the business deal of a lifetime, then marry the woman of his dreams. But everything goes to hell when a faceless enemy wants to destroy his family’s empire and see him dead. Except the bomb meant to kill him fails. He wakes up from a coma to find his face scarred and his brother missing and wanted for murder. Now that he’s damaged, he hides away from the world—including the woman he loves. He refuses to be a burden to her, so even though it destroys him, he sets her free.

She’s about to prove him wrong…

Isla MacDonald isn’t walking away from Evan just because he’s decided to shut her out of his life. He blames himself for the bombing that got her father killed and nearly killed him—but he’s wrong. After all attempts to see him fail, with a broken heart she tries to resume her life and take over her father’s firm. Though it’s not her dream, she wants to honor his legacy. But when someone tries to kill her—twice—she needs a bodyguard. To her surprise Evan steps up and insists on protecting her, putting on a show as the caring fiancé. But he won’t let her back into his life or into his heart. To have any chance at a future together, they’ll have to resurrect the past and stay alive long enough to expose the man determined to see them both dead.

Endgame Trilogy:
Bishop's Knight
Bishop's Queen
Bishop's Endgame (February 2020)

Visit Katie Reus' website for more information.

Review:
Isla and Evan were the perfect couple, very much in love and looking forward to planning their wedding, but that was before Evan was badly injured in an explosion and things quickly spiralled out of control. Not wanting Isla to be stuck with a damaged man and also blaming himself for the death of her father, who was killed in the same explosion, Evan chose to push Isla away. He refused to even see or speak to her and broke her heart at a time when she needed him the most. Isla never wanted to give up on Evan but after weeks of no contact she realises that it's probably time for her to try and move on with her own life. Until she finds herself in danger that is. There's no way that Evan can leave Isla unprotected and the more time they spend together the more he realises what a terrible mistake he made in pushing her away but can he convince her to give him another chance?

We already met both Isla and Evan in the previous book, Bishop's Knight, so I was pleased that we were getting their story next. I kind of wanted to shake some sense into Evan for the way he was treating Isla in the previous book. He was doing that macho thing of trying to protect her by pushing her away but it was obvious that he was just making things even worse for both of them so it was incredibly frustrating to watch. I'm glad we got to see part of the story from his point of view because it made it much easier to forgive him for his stupidity, we get to see just how much he is struggling to deal with both his injuries and the survivors guilt he feels at making it out alive when so many others, including Isla's father, died. Evan made some dumb choices and he did hurt Isla because of that but it was easier to forgive him because we saw exactly what he was going through too.

Luckily it doesn't take him long to realise his mistake either and then he goes all out to win Isla back and to prove that she can trust him again. I could equally understand why Isla was wary of getting her heart broken again, not only did she lose her father in terrible circumstances but at the same time the one person she should have been able to rely on the most walked away and abandoned her too. She tried to hard to get through to Evan in the beginning but he was stubborn to the core and didn't even have the guts to explain things face to face. I found myself really rooting for these two to sort things out and get back together though. They were a great couple and the chemistry between them was palpable, even when they weren't really on speaking terms. I'm glad Isla made Evan work a bit to win her back but I was definitely happy to see them back on the same page.

Bishop's Queen was everything I was looking for, there's a strong romance with great characters plus a hint of danger alongside a mystery that kept me guessing who the bad guys were. I'm really looking forward to the final book in the trilogy where we'll finally get to know the third Bishop sibling better and hopefully see him clear his name.

Source: Received via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Friday, 25 October 2019

Review: Kindred in Death - J.D. Robb

She was just an instrument. A weapon. He wanted it to be in that house, inside the house where the cop believed his little girl would always be safe.

A phone call from up high interrupts Eve's plans to have a lazy day with her roguish husband Roarke: The teenage daughter of Captain Jonah McMasters, head of the NYPD drug squad, has been found raped and strangled.

A terrifying video of Deena, bloody and beaten beyond recognition, suggests a link to a criminal in her father's past, but Eve is getting nowhere - until another murder, and another video, reveals the killer's deadly intent: merciless retribution in the cruellest way possible.

Eve and her team must race against the clock to identify the next victim of a killer who will stop at nothing...

In Death Series:
Naked in Death
Glory in Death
Immortal in Death
Rapture in Death
Ceremony in Death
Vengeance in Death
Holiday in Death
Midnight in Death (Novella)
Conspiracy in Death
Loyalty in Death
Witness in Death
Judgement in Death
Betrayal in Death
Interlude in Death (Novella)
Seduction in Death
Reunion in Death
Purity in Death
Portrait in Death
Imitation in Death
Big Jack (Available in the Remember When Anthology or separately)
Divided in Death
Visions in Death
Survivor in Death
Origin in Death
Memory in Death
Haunted in Death (Novella)
Born in Death
Innocent in Death
Creation in Death
Eternity in Death (Novella)
Strangers in Death
Salvation in Death
Ritual in Death (Novella)
Promises in Death
Kindred in Death
Missing in Death (Novella)
Fantasy in Death
Indulgence in Death
Possession in Death (Novella)
Treachery in Death
New York to Dallas
Chaos in Death (Novella)
Celebrity in Death
Delusion in Death
Calculated in Death
Thankless in Death
Taken in Death (Novella)
Concealed in Death
Festive in Death
Obsessed in Death
Devoted in Death
Wonderment in Death (Novella)
Brotherhood in Death
Apprentice in Death
Echoes in Death
Secrets in Death
Dark in Death
Leverage in Death
Connections in Death (2019)

Visit J.D. Robb's website for more information.

Review:
When Eve is asked to investigate the brutal murder of a police captain's sixteen year old daughter she's hit with all kinds of awful memories of the abuse she suffered as a child. That won't stop her doing everything in her power to get justice for Deena though, it just means the case will take an emotional toll on her. It's obvious that Deena was targeted by someone wanting to get revenge on her father but none of his previous cases are leading anywhere and they don't have a single suspect.

I think Kindred in Death probably has one of the worst murder cases that Eve has had to face in a while, there's just something awful reading about an innocent young girl getting killed so brutally by someone she thought she could trust that really hit home both for Eve as a cop and for me as a reader. I did really enjoy watching Eve and her team doing so much leg work trying to find the killer though, they had no real evidence to go on at the beginning so it was all about trying to piece together how Deena met her killer and taking it on from there. A lot of clever police work eventually pays off when they have a suspect but that doesn't make him any easier to find.

One of the things I love most is the connections between the characters, obviously there's Eve's relationship with Roarke which I love (please someone tell me where the real life Roarkes are all hiding!) but also the camaraderie between Eve, Peabody, McNab, Feeny, Baxter and Trueheart while they're working the job and Eve's reluctant friendship with so many of the recurring characters. The darkness of this story is lightened up a little by preparations for a wedding and the fun banter between all of the characters we've come to know so well over the series. I've definitely fallen down an In Death rabbit hole this year, I can't seem to get enough of these books and the second I finish reading one I'm itching to pick up the next. I'm dreading the day I'm caught up on all the novels published so far!

Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Thursday, 24 October 2019

Book Trailer: When We Caught Fire - Anna Godbersen

I know I'm not the only blogger who struggles to read all the books on their to read mountains, there are just so many amazing books out there and not enough hours in a day to actually read them all. Anyway, I want to continue highlighting a few that are on my radar but I haven't quite managed to get to yet.

When We Caught Fire by Anna Godbersen isn't a book I've heard a lot about but I stumbled across the trailer on YouTube and it caught my eye. It's a bit different to my normal reads but it's got some pretty good reviews so I'm curious enough to want to give it a try.

It’s 1871 and Emmeline Carter is poised to take Chicago’s high society by storm. Between her father’s sudden rise to wealth, and her recent engagement to Chicago’s most eligible bachelor, Emmeline has it all. But she can’t stop thinking about the life she left behind, including her childhood sweetheart, Anders Magnuson. Fiona Byrne, Emmeline’s childhood best friend, is delighted by her friend’s sudden rise to prominence, especially since it means Fiona is free to pursue Anders herself. But when Emmeline risks everything for one final fling with Anders, Fiona feels completely betrayed.

As the summer turns to fall, the city is at a tipping point: friendships are tested, hearts are broken, and the tiniest spark might set everything ablaze. Sweeping, soapy, and romantic, this is a story about an epic love triangle—one that will literally set the city ablaze, and change the lives of three childhood friends forever.

Visit Anna Godbersen's website for more information



If you've already read When We Caught Fire I'd love to know what you thought of it so please do leave me a link to your review in the comments!

Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Review: Angel Mage - Garth Nix

More than a century has passed since Liliath crept into the empty sarcophagus of Saint Marguerite, fleeing the Fall of Ystara. But she emerges from her magical sleep still beautiful, looking no more than nineteen, and once again renews her single-minded quest to be united with her lover, Palleniel, the archangel of Ystara.

A seemingly impossible quest, but Liliath is one of the greatest practitioners of angelic magic to have ever lived, summoning angels and forcing them to do her bidding.

Liliath knew that most of the inhabitants of Ystara died from the Ash Blood plague or were transformed into beastlings, and she herself led the survivors who fled into neighboring Sarance. Now she learns that angels shun the Ystaran’s descendants. If they are touched by angelic magic, their blood will turn to ash. They are known as Refusers, and can only live the most lowly lives.

But Liliath cares nothing for the descendants of her people, save how they can serve her. It is four young Sarancians who hold her interest: Simeon, a studious doctor-in-training; Henri, a dedicated fortune hunter; Agnez, an adventurous musketeer cadet; and Dorotea, an icon-maker and scholar of angelic magic. They are the key to her quest.

The four feel a strange kinship from the moment they meet, but do not know why, or suspect their importance. All become pawns in Liliath’s grand scheme to fulfill her destiny and be united with the love of her life. No matter the cost to everyone else. . .

Visit Garth Nix's website for more information

Review:
I've been a fan of Garth Nix since I first read Sabriel more years ago than I care to remember so of course I was ridiculously excited to read his new stand alone fantasy novel, Angel Mage. This story was inspired by his love of The Three Musketeers but with added magic. He has created a world where certain people are able to interact with angels with the help of icons and can summon them to do their bidding. Each angel has its own icon design and a different ability but the more powerful the angel the more it takes out of the summoner each time they call on them. Some of the angels can be used for things like healing while others can provide light or offer all kinds of other forms of help. While summoners are rare and have varying levels of ability the icon creators are rarer still, it's a specialist art form to imbue the icons with the power to summon an angel and it's a much sought after skill.

This story is told from five different points of view which can sometimes make a story a little hard to follow but I found each of these characters distinct enough that I didn't have an issue. You have four friends: Agnez, a confidant young woman who is focused on her goal of becoming a Musketeer so she can help protect the queen like her mother did; Simeon, a trainee physician who is incredibly skilled with his hands; Dorotea, who is a talented but slightly ditzy icon maker with abilities that she's spent years trying to hide; and Henri, a boy who has spent years dreaming of becoming wealthy who just wants to prove himself to his family. Then you have Liliath, someone who is obviously hiding a lot of secrets and who definitely has a plan but who is only thinking of herself and her own goals and doesn't seem to care what it costs the people around her.

Angel Mage is one of those books that sucks you in and even though its a large book with over 500 pages I ended up flying through it because I desperately wanted to know what would happen next. I really loved Dorotea, Agnez, Simeon and Henri, they all have very different personalities but they worked well together as a team and drew on each other's strengths to do what needed to be done. Liliath was a harder character to like because she was so ruthless but I found her chapters so interesting because you never knew quite what she'd do next. What I loved most about the world was the way men and women were completely equal with lots of women in high ranking jobs and no signs of misogyny, there was also no sign of racism in spite of the fact that we had characters of all different colours and it was treated as completely normal for people to have same sex relationships.

The story works perfectly as a stand alone but I really do hope that Garth Nix decides to revisit this world in the future, there seems to be so much more to explore in the world and I'd be really interested in both spending more time with these characters but also in seeing the fallout of events in the final few chapters.

Source: Received from Gollancz in exchange for an honest review

Other reviews of this book:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Hardback / Kindle:



Don't forget to check out the rest of the stops on the blog tour:

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

Release Blitz: Bishop's Queen - Katie Reus


We are so excited to be bringing you the release of BISHOP'S QUEEN, the second book in Katie Reus's Endgame Trilogy. If you love all things romantic suspense, be sure to grab your copy today!


About BISHOP'S QUEEN

Return to the Endgame trilogy where blood is thick, but passion is thicker…

He doesn’t believe in fairy-tale endings…

They used to call Evan Bishop the golden boy. He had it all and was about to close the business deal of a lifetime, then marry the woman of his dreams. But everything goes to hell when a faceless enemy wants to destroy his family’s empire and see him dead. Except the bomb meant to kill him fails. He wakes up from a coma to find his face scarred and his brother missing and wanted for murder. Now that he’s damaged, he hides away from the world—including the woman he loves. He refuses to be a burden to her, so even though it destroys him, he sets her free.

She’s about to prove him wrong…

Isla MacDonald isn’t walking away from Evan just because he’s decided to shut her out of his life. He blames himself for the bombing that got her father killed and nearly killed him—but he’s wrong. After all attempts to see him fail, with a broken heart she tries to resume her life and take over her father’s firm. Though it’s not her dream, she wants to honor his legacy. But when someone tries to kill her—twice—she needs a bodyguard. To her surprise Evan steps up and insists on protecting her, putting on a show as the caring fiancé. But he won’t let her back into his life or into his heart. To have any chance at a future together, they’ll have to resurrect the past and stay alive long enough to expose the man determined to see them both dead.


Get your copy of BISHOP'S QUEEN today!


About Katie Reus

Katie Reus is the New York Times, USA Today, and IndieReader bestselling author of the Red Stone Security series, the Moon Shifter series and the Deadly Ops series. She fell in love with romance at a young age thanks to books she pilfered from her mom’s stash. Years later she loves reading romance almost as much as she loves writing it.

However, she didn’t always know she wanted to be a writer. After changing majors many times, she finally graduated summa cum laude with a degree in psychology. Not long after that she discovered a new love. Writing. She now spends her days writing dark paranormal romance and sexy romantic suspense. Her book Avenger’s Heat recently won the Georgia RWA Maggie Award for Excellence in the fantasy/paranormal category.

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Goodreads

Monday, 21 October 2019

Review: Reaper - Larissa Ione

THE DEMONICA SERIES RETURNS…

He is the Keeper of Souls. Judge, jury, and executioner. He is death personified.

He is the Grim Reaper.

A fallen angel who commands the respect of both Heaven and Hell, Azagoth has presided over his own underworld realm for thousands of years. As the overlord of evil souls, he maintains balance crucial to the existence of life on Earth and beyond. But as all the realms gear up for the prophesied End of Days, the ties that bind him to Sheoul-gra have begun to chafe.

Now, with his beloved mate and unborn child the target of an ancient enemy, Azagoth will stop at nothing to save them, even if it means breaking blood oaths and shattering age-old alliances.

Even if it means destroying himself and setting the world on fire…

The Demonica Series:
Pleasure Unbound
Desire Unchained
Passion Unleashed
Eternity Embraced (Novella)
Ecstasy Unveiled
Sin Undone
Eternal Rider (Lords of Deliverance book 1)
Vampire Fight Club (Novella in the Supernatural anthology or as a separate ebook)
Immortal Rider (Lords of Deliverance book 2)
Lethal Rider (Lords of Deliverance book 3)
Rogue Rider (Lords of Deliverance book 4)
Reaver
Azagoth (Novella) (Demonica Underworld book 1)
Revenant
Hades (Novella) (Demonica Underworld book 2)
Base Instincts (Novella)
Z (Novella) (Demonica Underworld book 3)
Razr (Novella) (Demonica Underworld book 4)
Hawkyn (Novella) (Demonica Underworld book 5) (March 2018)
Her Guardian Angel (Novella) (Demonica Underworld book 6, also part of the Masters and Mercenaries Crossover Collection)
Dining with Angels: Bits & Bites from the Demonica Universe (Short Story Collection & Recipe Book, Demonica Underworld book 7)
Cipher (Demonica Underworld book 8)
Reaper (Demonica Underworld book 9)

For more information visit Larissa Ione's website

Review:
I've been a fan of the Demonica series for years now and it's always exciting when I get a new book in my hands. After a few years of shorter novellas I was really looking forward to reading a full length novel again and Larissa Ione didn't disappoint, let's just say that Reaper is a game changer in SO many ways. This is the first time we've had a whole extra book about a couple who are already living their HEA but considering Azagoth and Liliana have had so much going on as side characters in the Demonica Underworld stories I was really glad that we got to revisit them, especially with the way things played out in this story.

This is a really difficult book to review because it would be far too easy to give spoilers but there were some absolutely shocking things happening that completely threw me for a loop. Unexpected betrayals, surprising allies, answers to questions that have been building for several books and although this book was in some ways an ending it also opens the world up for a whole new spin off series which I'm REALLY looking forward to!

Fans of the series really don't want to miss this book but if you're new to the world please don't start here, you'd be missing out on so much that it really would be a waste. This is a series that has been building up for years and there is so much to explore as you get to know all the characters involved, there are a lot of appearances from the earlier couples in this book that are fantastic because we already know them so well. In fact this made me nostalgic and has left me seriously tempted to start a series reread. Reaper is a highly recommend instalment in the Demonica world and it's as series that all paranormal romance fans should be reading.

Source: Received from the author in exchange for an honest review

Other Reviews:
If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.

Paperback / Kindle:

Blog Tour: Reaper - Larissa Ione


"Reaper is . . . Epic. Thrilling. Amazing. No one can suck me into a story like Larissa Ione." -- Donna Grant, New York Times bestselling author

For love, he’ll watch the world burn.
For revenge, he’ll light the match.

New York Times bestselling author Larissa Ione returns to her fan favorite Demonica Series with REAPER, available now!


THE DEMONICA SERIES RETURNS…

He is the Keeper of Souls. Judge, jury, and executioner. He is death personified.

He is the Grim Reaper.

A fallen angel who commands the respect of both Heaven and Hell, Azagoth has presided over his own underworld realm for thousands of years. As the overlord of evil souls, he maintains balance crucial to the existence of life on Earth and beyond. But as all the realms gear up for the prophesied End of Days, the ties that bind him to Sheoul-gra have begun to chafe.

Now, with his beloved mate and unborn child the target of an ancient enemy, Azagoth will stop at nothing to save them, even if it means breaking blood oaths and shattering age-old alliances.

Even if it means destroying himself and setting the world on fire…


Download your copy today!
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/ReaperLI
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2HfUiXp
Amazon Paperback: https://amzn.to/2KUZ51n
Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2Zhf4jp


Excerpt:

Lilliana woke to someone tap dancing on her bladder.

Groaning, she rolled over and bumped into Azagoth. Pleasantly surprised that he was still in bed, she ignored her need to pee and curled up against him.

She’d missed this so much while she was gone.

“Good morning,” he murmured, his husky voice even more gravelly than usual.

“Morning.” She snuggled into his shoulder. “I’m surprised you’re not working.”

He yawned. “You wore me out last night.”

Smiling against his skin, she trailed her fingers along the hard ridges and deep valleys of his abs.

“I wanted to show you how grateful I was that you threw me a baby shower.” And she’d done it without getting too active. Eidolon couldn’t begrudge her one orgasm, right?

“Mmm.” He pressed a kiss into her hair. “You must have been very grateful.”

She slid her hand under the sheet and meandered her way to the curve of his hip. She might be a million months into her pregnancy, but her sex drive didn’t care in the least.

“I’m still grateful.”

He hissed as her knuckles brushed his shaft. “Not complaining.”

It truly had been sweet of him to gather together the denizens of Sheoul-gra for a big celebration of food, drink, and games in the traditions of people from the human, demon, and angelic cultures. She’d suffered two more bouts of intense nausea and some cramps, but they’d passed quickly. What hadn’t passed was Azagoth’s concern.

Which was probably why he was still in bed with her.

It was cute the way he hovered. Annoying at times, but cute.

“I just want you to know that you’re my life,” he said. “Without you, I’m a monster.”

“And what are you with me?”

He gave her a rare, boyish grin, made even more playful by his mop of bedhead. “A happy monster.”

“I’m very happy about the happy.” She rubbed her eyes and yawned.

“Things are good, Lil,” he said. “I never thought much about being a partner, let alone a parent, but I want to do these things with you.” He settled his hand on her belly and smiled with wonder. “This will be my first child born without a predetermined future. He or she can be anything. Do anything.”

“Incredible, isn’t it?” She pushed up on one elbow and leaned in to kiss his chest. She’d kissed every inch of him last night. Maybe she’d lick every inch of him this morning. “And our baby will be born to parents who love each other.”

Determined to show him how much she loved him, she kissed her way lower. Her lips whispered over his nipple, but before she could taste him, a cramp wrenched her insides. She sucked in a harsh breath, her hand going to her belly.

“What is it?” Azagoth jackknifed up, his expression dark with worry. “Is it the baby?”

Fierce heat swelled beneath the surface of her skin as her abdomen tightened. “I think it might be Braxton Hicks,” she said between panting breaths.

“What?”

“Cara had them.” Closing her eyes to stop the room from spinning, she eased back onto her pillow. “They’re like practice contractions.”

She didn’t remember Cara complaining about being hot and sweating buckets, though. Another cramp streaked through her, and she moaned. Cara had said they were painful, as if someone were squeezing her intestines.

This was more like someone was driving a red-hot blade through them.

“You’re white as a ghost, Lilli.”

Something’s wrong.

No, nothing was wrong. She was being paranoid.

Azagoth rested his palm on her forehead, testing her temperature. “Are these Hicks things supposed to be like this?”

She heard the panic in his voice but not the words. Her ears were buzzing. Her head was pounding. And, suddenly, a wave of agony wrapped around her and squeezed so hard she screamed. Vaguely, she heard Azagoth call out her name as a warm gush spread between her thighs.

“Lilliana? Lilliana!” His voice droned in and out as the room began to tilt. There was shouting. More pain. Her thoughts fragmented.

And then, finally…nothing.

About Larissa Ione

Air Force veteran Larissa Ione traded in a career in meteorology to pursue her passion of writing. She has since published dozens of books, hit several bestseller lists, including the New York Times and USA Today, and has been nominated for a RITA award. She now spends her days in pajamas with her computer, strong coffee, and supernatural worlds. She believes in celebrating everything, and would never be caught without a bottle of Champagne chilling in the fridge…just in case. She currently lives in Wisconsin with her retired U.S. Coast Guard husband, her son, a rescue cat named Vegas, and her very own hellhounds, a King Shepherd named Hexe and a Belgian Malinois named Duvel.

Connect with Larissa:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OfficialLarissaIone
BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/larissa-ione
Twitter: https://twitter.com/larissaione
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2k0AKOi
Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2lyeRGA
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/larissaione/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/larissaione/
Website: http://www.larissaione.com/

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